Algarve, land of many peoples
Al-Gharb, the west is the origin of modern day Algarve. From traces of the Roman presence to evidence of the long legacy of Muslim times, from the Christian reconquest to the epic period of the Portuguese discoveries, you will find all kinds of reasons for rediscovering the signs of a quite distinctive historical past. Add to that, the very mild weather, prize wining beaches, rich and varied gastronomy, vibrant nightlife, and you will have lots of choices for a relaxing vacation. We are located close between Faro and Tavira allowing you to easily discover the whole region.
Fuseta is a small fishing village located between Olhão and Tavira. It is a gateway to the protected area of Ria Formosa, with access to pristine beaches and many water activities. It is a quiet town, with various restaurants, cafes and supermarkets in the town center and nearby areas. Olhão and Tavira are approx 10 min by car and offer wider choices including nightlife options, award winning golf courses and of course the wonderful Algarve food and wine. Faro and Albufeira are 20-30 min away with even further variety of activities.
Tavira is one of the main cities in Algarve. With known settlements prior to the Roman empire, the town has flourished during the various periods from the Moors to the Christians but it has now lost some of its importance as a fishing center. Agriculture and tourism are now the main activities. It is located in the ria Formosa, and has beautiful beaches including praia das ancoras in Ilha do Barril, also a nature preserve.
Olhão is located close to Faro and it is a fishing port, with a history of production of canned/ processed fish products. Olhão first written record is form the 13th century and was settled as a fishing village at the end of the estuary in ria Formosa. Today it still has an important industrial base, fishing and of course tourism. Two islands in Olhão have fabulous beaches – Culatra and Armona, and are easily accessible by boat. The old Market was refurbished and now anchors a revitalized seafront artery, home of many restaurants and bars. The Marina area further west has been redeveloped with a 5 star hotel and upscale apartments.
Iguarias da Vila, best food and a memorable xerem – more info
Tianica, in the village center, another favorite – more info
Restaurante o Trevo – great fish dishes more info
Escandinavia Green Spirit, for vegetarian nd vegan options – more info
A Barquinha, near the market, memorable meals, a fantastic salad and great service. Reserve ahead more info
Restaurante Nikita, fabulous meals with great presentation – more info
Cais do Gilao , great cataplanas with seafood and fresh fish – more info
Rei das Cataplanas, aka restaurante Ria Formosa, near the market, wide choice of traditional cataplanas dishes. more info
Tacho da Avó, Portuguese traditional food – more info
Mare Shrimp & Stuff, great xerem/seafood polenta – more info
Vegetarian/ Vegan Options
Pausa, in Tavira, various vegan, vegetarian, and omnivorous options – more info
Veganices, in Tavira, tiny restaurant, great food – more info
Figo de Pita, in Olhao, brunch place with tasty vegetarian and vegan options – more info
Bar Farol and Nano brew are a few of the bars available for a drink in Fuseta. In Tavira, Quasi and Santa Lucia are very happening, and in Olhao the No Clue and Cais are a few of the options…
Here are a few listings
No Clue Bar
Cais Club Bar
Catita & Companhia
ZONA – Cocktail Lounge
There are quite a few festivals. Here is a sampling
Festival da Sardinha Portimão/ Sardine festival- (August) where you can sample grilled sardines throughout the town.
International Sand Sculpture Festival in Pera– (March to October) gigantic sand sculptures
Popular Saints’ Festival/ Santos populares ( June) – Throughout the Algarve
Shellfish festival/ Festival do Marisco Olhão (August) – Enjoy all things shellfish
International Jazz Festival Loulé (July)- Two days of great jazz
Check the full list here
Here is a selection of the principal Museums in the region
Museu Municipal no Convento de Nossa Senhora da Assunção,paintings, Roman and Medieval periods
Museu Regional do Algarve, Ethnography
Museu Marítimo Almirante Ramalho Ortigão Fishing and maritime displays
Museu do Traje Traditional garments
Museu da Cidade Olhao
Museu Municipal, Loule Castle
Alcoutim castle- Núcleo Museológico de Arqueologia Islamic era board games
Centro Cultural António Aleixo, Vila Real Sto Antonio
Museu Municipal de Tavira Palácio da Galeria, rebuilt in the XVIII century (Phoenician artifacts)
Museu Municipal de Arqueologia de Silves Moorish period
Museu Municipal Lagos- Baroque artifacts
Museu da Terra e do Mar, na Carrapateira
Places of Interest
Algarve has a lot to offer.
There is much to do in the Algarve to keep you as busy or relaxed as you wish. World class golf, Beach, Boating, Fishing, Parasailing are a often mentioned as top activities. But you can also do bird watching and nature trekking in the ria Formosa natural park, mountain trails in the various serras, kayaking and sea cave visits around Portimão and Lagos.
Gourmands have here also a lot to sample from teh delicious seafood, simply prepared fresh fish and of course the popular staple of piri-piri chicken. Carob flour is used in a variety of deserts and breads and should also be tasted. Being the land of almond trees, the Portuguese marzipan sweets and variations with fig paste are a must for young and mature visitors.
The Moto and Auto Gran Prix have made a presence during the pandemics and will likely continue to be present. The Algarve also hosts Golf tournaments. Sailing, rowing and other competitions are also held throughout the region.
Vila Real de Santo Antonio – a seaside city built at the mouth of the Guadiana River by the border with Spain. It has a beautiful square with great restaurants and watersport activities. Albeit being a small town it has a very varied offer of restaurants and bars, and beautiful sandy beaches. Golf is also a great reason to come with with award wining courses such as Quinta do Vale e Monte Rei.
Sagres – one of the most beautiful cities in Portugal, perched on the cliffs, with easy access to bays between the rock walls and great beaches. Surf is one of the reasons people come here, but being at the “corner” between the south and the west coast also has a special calling for many. If nothing else, restaurant Vila Velha and tasca are 2 great reasons to visit. Sagres is also a gateway to visit almost private beaches on the Alentejo coast or between Sagres and Lagos. Sagres retains the old town feeling without the mass tourism that invaded other areas.
Carrapateira & Praia da Bordeira – more like a 2 day itinerary if you wish to enjoy the superb nature in this area- a small river and its pools, meeting the dunes and the mighty Atlantic ocean, all framed by impressive rocky walls. A favorite for alternative types.